Foster mom allowed fights, charges show

by SEAN KIMMONS

A Buda foster mother accused of letting two children under her care fight multiple times has landed a felony charge, court records show.

Cathy Garza, 42, allegedly watched her foster children, a 14-year-old girl and 12-year-old boy, spar at least three times, one of which Garza held onto the boy’s arms as he was punched, authorities say.

On Dec. 14, Hays County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a delayed report of an assault in the 1000 block of Shadow Creek Boulevard, where Garza told them that the boy hit the teenage girl with a four-by-four block of wood, an arrest affidavit says.

When Deputy Amber Vaughan spoke to the boy, he asked her to look at his back where she observed several bruises and a large bump on the back of his head. The boy told her that Garza was in the same room when he was beaten up by the girl that night. After being punched in the first of the attacks, the boy picked up a one-by-six piece of wood from a dresser in his bedroom and hit the girl’s wrist. The girl then began to knock the boy around again while Garza refused to step in, both children said in the affidavit.

In a third attack on the boy, Garza said she restrained the boy by his arms as the girl continued to pound him. During the fray, the boy put his finger into the girl’s mouth which she bit and caused to bleed. Garza then said she was forced to throw the boy against the wall to stop the scuffle, according to the affidavit, written by Vaughan.

Afterward, Garza chose to take the teenage girl to the emergency room for minor bruising to her wrist, denying the boy any medical treatment, Vaughan reported.

Garza has been charged with injury to a child, a third-degree felony. She was booked and released Dec. 15 on a $10,000 bond, jail records show. It is unclear who is currently supervising the two children.